The Chemist: My Least Favorite Classes

Hey Everyone! I hope you all have been doing well and are enjoying the summer. A few weeks ago we talked about the classes we loved, but today we're going to flip the script and talk about those that we didn't like. I'm going to focus on the chemistry classes I didn't like because I can't really remember completely disliking a general education class at Pitt. Plus at a certain point of my academic career I was only taking chemistry classes. So here we go.

Organic Chemistry.

Look, I tell any and everyone and I did not mesh AT ALL. I knew the moment I sat in class that it was going to be a longgggg two semesters. Organic chemistry is a lot of reaction mechanisms, learning how to name compounds, trying to figure out how two things make something else - I hated it. It didn't help that my professors weren't the best at relaying the information, but I just could not grasp the concepts. If I could've skipped it in undergrad, I would have. What I did do, though, is refuse to take any organic classes once I got to OSU, which has worked itself out pretty well. The organic I have had to use so far has been minimal so I've survived. Plus my friend/labmate, Kavya, is amazing at it so I basically just ask her for help if I need it for something specific.

Quantum Mechanics.

The other chemistry class I didn't like at all was the part of physical chemistry where we did quantum mechanics. I'm not even going to attempt to break down quantum in layman terms, but essentially it's theoretical chemistry. A lotttt of math/derivations and all your answers are either 0 or 1. This part of physical chemistry takes everything you've learned in a basic chemistry class and goes into an in depth explanation of why something is the way it is or why some assumptions we make in general chemistry are wrong. The second semester of physical chemistry, thermodynamics and kinetics, was great! I understood that material so much better and it was relatively enjoyable - I ended up taking it again in grad school because THAT math and THOSE concepts made sense - but quantum?! Nope. It's a hard no for me.

Those were the big 2 that I didn't like at Pitt. As far as grad school classes, I've liked them - well as much as you can like a class in grad school. It's better on this level because you get to pick the classes you take, for the most part. The flexibility I have in the program made it easy to avoid organic and quantum mechanics and focus on inorganic and analytical classes.

What are some of your least favorite classes? Tweet us some responses!

See you next week!

-The Chemist


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